Although noted naturalist Charles Darwin was referring to the animal kingdom when he described the concept of the survival of the fittest, the same principle applies to the business world, as well. In trying economic times such as these, only the strongest and most highly evolved firms are likely to struggle through and survive.
Firms that are constantly beset by petty problems such as ongoing conflict, power struggles, disagreements, and drama may actually be imperiling their own existence. Although these daily annoyances may seem trivial, they can accumulate over time to create a problem that is potentially serious – and that may imperil your firm’s ability to function properly in times of crisis.
Is your organizational culture dysfunctional? Is your team toxic? Use this checklist to assess the health of your team’s working dynamic.
- Does your team generally meet or exceed its goals and commitments? If your firm is still able to achieve overall success with projects and productivity, your team is most likely functional. However, if you’re having difficulty meeting your basic goals, deadlines, and commitments, you may be facing a systemic problem.
- Can you rely on your staff to make good decisions? The ability to delegate is a must in today’s lean organization. Can you trust your staff to make prudent choices in your absence? If not, why not? Is it the decision-making processes that are broken, or do you have a shortage of leadership talent?
- Is internal communication effective and friendly? Are vital information and project updates transferred between team members in a timely manner, or are miscommunications and miscues an all-too-common problem? If your staff’s ability to communicate is impaired, there may be a fundamental problem stemming from the organizational culture.
- Is your team’s work accurate and efficient? Are your clients generally pleased with the quality of work your team produces? Do you complete your projects on time, every time? Do projects proceed smoothly and on schedule, without endless snafus and complications? If you seem to have difficulty getting through a single project without major problems, your organizational culture could be at fault.
- Do interpersonal squabbles and conflicts impinge on work quality and timeliness? Does it seem like internecine battles and crusades between staff members interfere with your team’s ability to work together as a functional unit? Do team members hold grudges against one another, or do they work out conflicts in a constructive manner? If squabbles, drama, and “bad blood” are constant issues among your staff members, your organizational culture may be suffering.
How do you help keep your team’s organizational dynamic on track? What’s your biggest challenge when it comes to maintaining healthy working relationships? Give us your two cents in the comments.